Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Doll By Doll|
Grand Passion (Hk)
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
Long awaited 2007 digitally remastered reissue of the fourth album by the British Post-Punk/Folk quartet led by the talented Scottish singer/songwriter Jackie Leven and his hauntingly beautiful voice. Originally released i... more »
Long awaited 2007 digitally remastered reissue of the fourth album by the British Post-Punk/Folk quartet led by the talented Scottish singer/songwriter Jackie Leven and his hauntingly beautiful voice. Originally released in 1982, this reissue features 12 tracks including 'Strong Hands', 'Dancing Shoes' Cool Skies' and more. Rhino UK.
All Dolled Up.
Paul Ess. | Holywell, N.Wales,UK. | 06/03/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"At the moment (the 'moment' being vital in a rock sense) this is the only review on the page, and I feel a kind of responsibility to make it straight-forward and clear.
This is difficult for someone who believes the aura and atmosphere of a music is just as important as the sounds themselves, but, at the risk of scoring a spectacular own goal, I'll give it a go.
In a nutshell, 'Grand Passion' is a robust, strong and smart album. Jackie Leven (on this album anyway) is all of DbD; he's a slightly frustrating but usually interesting pop/rock option. A bit Weller, a bit Costello, a lot punch-drunk boxer gamely (s)training for one last title fight after much nearly's and last-second disappointments.
Thing is, with 'GP' - he wins!
For the purpose of the 'review', there's nothing complex or experimental here. The songs are melodic, level-headed and they're delivered in a straight, no-nonsense style. Leven's aspirational failure to be Hall and Oates, but to turn in something more low-key and personal is a big part of what makes 'GP' such a goodie.
Leven has deserved 'GP';
Years of punch-ups, drugs and hard drinking, sweaty and smoky gigs at the Marquee and the Bridge House, endless, thankless, pointless touring up and down the country, constant sniping and sniggering from the 'rock press', tumult and despair in his private life etc, etc, have all combined to finally see him earn his spurs in a good old rock-trooper survivor sense, and you don't begrudge him for a second.
All Scottish, black leather and tough shades, his downgrade from the slight pomposity of yore, to a lean, stripped down bare-basic is what ultimately provides him with a pleasing victory.
He's even got a Stones cover version on there -'Under My Thumb', which he's pumped full of Leven energy. Another unlikely winner in an album full of unlikely winners.
My favourite song (sung by his only real aider and abettor; Helen Turner) is 'So Long Kid'; a slushy piano ballad about (you guessed it) failure in the music business and the despondency and sadness it arouses. (of course, it's not that sad these days - the odious Simon Cowell is making a decent career out of propagating exactly that misery) But it's heartfelt. REAL. You come to it and feel.
There's nothing breathtakingly brilliant on 'GP' but there's nothing bad either.
Wow, a collection of great songs, performed with skill, style and (yes, go on then..) passion.